Functionality of the player in Studio '13 with Engage Interactions

Dec 27, 2013

I am struggling with how to implement Engage Interactions in Studio '13 now that it has the integrated player.  In Studio '09, we would tell participants to click the items on the their screen (in an Engage Interaction) and then click the 'Next Slide' button when finished.  The 'Next Slide' button would automatically appear when they had viewed all items in the interaction.

In Studio '13, even though there is a setting in the Engage Interactions to allow participants to view the items in any order, if they are not on the "last" item in the Engage Interaction, the 'Next' button in the player cycles them through the items in the interaction until they get to whatever Engage has as the last item before it will take them to the next slide.  So even if you set the slide properties for the 'Previous' and 'Next' buttons to go to the previous and next slide, unless participants are on the first or last item in an Engage interaction, the 'Previous' and 'Next' buttons won't go to the previous or next slide.

So from a participant's perspective, not only is this inconsistent (i.e. in PowerPoint slides the 'Previous' and 'Next' buttons go to the previous or next slides, and in Engage Interactions the 'Previous' and 'Next' buttons go to the previous or next item in the interaction), but it also forces all Engage Interactions to become boring click-on-the-'Next'-button-to-see-the-items-in-order interactions. 

Clicking on an item in an Engage Interaction no longer makes sense, because the odds are that once a participant looks at all the items, when they click on the 'Next' button to go to the next slide, they'll be sitting there wondering why the 'Next' button is taking them through interaction items that they already looked at!

10 Replies
Leslie McKerchie

Hi Brian!

In Presenter '13, each step in an Engage interaction is considered as a slide, and so the Next (and Previous) button moves between the steps as well. 

You can change the order of the steps, if you think that this would be helpful, otherwise if you instruct your learners to utilize the next button (even in the interaction) it might be helpful.

If you'd like to change the default behavior when navigating Engage interactions in Presenter '13, you can file this as a feature request. To ensure that your suggestion is appropriately routed to our product development team for review, please submit your feature request here.

Brian Keefer


I don't like to be negative, but my development team is considerably frustrated with the integrated player.  The very strong feeling here among the development staff is that the integrated player is half-baked.  Not only does it frequently "trap" you in an Engage Interaction or a QuizMaker Quiz, but the seekbar doesn't track audio in Presenter on slides that that have an Engage Interaction or QuizMaker Quiz. 

Why even produce the Engage Interaction where participants can select things on the screen, when to avoid the frustration of seeing everything over again when they want to go to the next slide, they have to just view everything in order by clicking on the 'Next' button?  Or how can a developer guess what order participants will view items in for Engage Interactions that are not linear, so that the 'Next' button actually goes to the next slide instead of cycling the participant through interaction items that they already looked at?

The integrated player basically made Articulate Studio '13 courses more linear unless participants navigate completely through the Menu tab which many of my clients do not want their participants to do (it generates too many help calls when their LMS is tracking completion by slides viewed because their users aren't tech-savy).

Lesle, I have a team of experienced instructional developers here and we are completely baffled by the way the integrated player was implemented.  I wish there were more positive things I could say about it, but the way it interacts with Engage and QuizMaker right now is completely is as if someone had a grand idea they didn't completely think through.

Karyn Aberts

I agree with Brian.  You have the option to set the Engage activity to view in any order, but that option is completely useless.  Since you cannot make the next button actually go to the next slide, why do you even have this as an option in the settings?  I really like to use the Engage interactions as suplemental information and not required otherwise I might as well make a boring slide with bullet points.  These should be fun ways to interact with the content and they no longer serve that function.

Is there a way to add my thoughts to Brian's feature request?  I think if we cold do that you would find a lot more people would vote to have this function added as quickly as possible.

Anand Khurma

Karyn Aberts said:

I really like to use the Engage interactions as suplemental information and not required otherwise I might as well make a boring slide with bullet points."

Well said Karyn, I am struggling with this very design issue now. I hope there is an update to fix this issue in the near future or I'll have to look at another authoring platform. :(
Margaret  Linville

Thanks, now I know I can't solve this problem. Another person made a tutorial that has this problem. A customer was confused.

I was told to look at it and explain how it worked to the customer. I felt really bad having to explain that the next button didn't go to the next slide and just gave a message that you should look at all the content before moving forward.

Anything published like this makes you look like you don't know what you are doing.

Maybe Articulate should have integrated engage into Storyline.

Leslie McKerchie

Hey everyone!

With the release of Update 3 for Articulate Studio '13, you can now control how the Prev and Next buttons behave for Articulate Engage interactions embedded in Articulate Presenter courses. The navigation buttons can either jump to the previous/next step in the interaction or the previous/next slide in the overall presentation. See this article for details.

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